Friday, February 13, 2015

Valentine's Olive Oil Cake at Anthology & A New Giveaway

Celebration. Love. All things delicious. Here, a few extra-special notes of delicious….

I've wanted to make an olive oil cake for a while, and so I figured Valentine's Day was as good an occasion as any.

A friend gifted me a bunch of homegrown citrus, including these kumquats, from her friend's father's garden in New Orleans. (how lucky am I?!) This seemed like the perfect occasion to marry a citrus compote with an endlessly moist cake. It was a great idea.

I made two cakes with a mindset to give some of the finished goodness away.  I have two sets of friends expecting babies very soon. Who wouldn't benefit from homemade-with-love food, while adjusting to new schedules and the myriad challenges babies present? Yes.

Psst - it's really easy to make once you have your ingredients gathered, so in the spirit of love, why not?

The full story is here. The compote requires a little more attention than the cake but it gives back big. You could choose to make only the cake, which is utterly amazing on its own. I hope you make both. The combination of jewel-toned jamminess enrobing velvety cake is luscious. Seriously.

So many things going on right now, it is nice to part the chaos with something so sublime as this.

I know I say that with every post. But really - I faced a recent hospitalization that confronted me with the need to change my lifestyle. I am recovering and overall am well, but it wasn't something to take lightly. I am grateful for having listened to my body and deciding to drive to the ER to see what all the funny business was about. And I'm extremely grateful to my family for their never-ending support.

Beyond that and my regular juggle of delicious projects, I experiment daily with foods of all kinds….whether for the basic need to get food in my belly for breakfast, or in the hopes of creating a gorgeous new story and then playing to flesh out ideas. Stay tuned for some news relating to that, soon.

In the meantime, here is a new giveaway to whet your appetites and inspire you, as you experiment in your own world:

This beautifully written and illustrated heirloom-style book shares regional French food in its traditional, authentic origins, based on 27 distinct regions throughout France. Co-authored by the great Chef Jöel Robuchon and French historian Loïc Bienassis, the duo share lesser-known specialties and highlight dishes specific to each region featured.

In order to qualify, follow me on Instagram if you aren't already, and leave a comment below telling me what French food you have made and loved, or which you would like to make most, that you have not tried already.  

You can also tweet "check out @melinaphotos French Valentine giveaway:" or tag me on Facebook saying the same. With each additional mention, your name gets added to the hat an additional time. In any comment that you leave, please leave a contact email so that I may be in touch with you should you be the winner. If I don't have an email, I have to pick another winner. 

To be eligible, you must live in the US and add your comments, tweets, and tags by 11:59 EST, Monday March 2nd.

Happy Valentine's Day! Share in the love. 


  1. Gorgeous cake!!! Loved your photography!!! It's so inspiring :)

    1. Thank you so much. It is always sweet to hear that people love what I dream up! xo

  2. My hubby and I love Creme Brûlée!

    1. Yay! Me too!! And I just made it for the first time, for a new Food5 feature I've been creating. Do you add any aromatics to yours? That is my next venture…. :)